This week's prompt that I'm choosing to write about is "What about school do you miss the least?" I can honestly say that I get to think about this on a daily basis. Between teaching middle school students and having two pre-teen daughters of my own, I get constant reminders of what life was like as a student.
I loved school itself. I have always been driven by new knowledge, and as a high school student I averaged a novel a day for reading. I once went to school with a 104 degree fever (I never told my parents I was sick until the next day) simply because I had a history test I didn't want to miss. My parents insisted I take a full course load in my senior year because it was free education, and I didn't put up much of a fight. I had two classes I was required to take and four electives. School was FUN with criminology, mythology, and psychology on my plate. Academics were never the problem.
There was, however, that pesky little issue of relationships. I just didn't know how to connect with people. Oh, I have some friends I still talk to on Facebook that I've known since "the good old days," but I never felt like I was truly one of the crowd. I always seemed to be on the fringes of each group I hung out with. Maybe this is another example of my constant need for new experiences. One day I would hang with my stoner friends, the next day my Mormon friends, and the day after that my ROTC friends. Each fulfilled a need that was unique. The problem was that I never really formed those deep friendships movies are made of. I always felt like no one TRULY understood me.
My daughters are experiencing this now. They make a friend, hang out for awhile, then somehow the couple just loses interest. Both girls have had friends "break up" with them because they are "weird." I just don't "get it" myself. I think my girls are fantastic. I would love to have friends that are as generous and honest and caring as they are. Fortunately today I do.
I've seen this in my classroom all year long. Friendships just don't seem to be as fulfilling as they should be. I'm beginning to think that we aren't truly ready to be a good friend until we've experienced life. When we've fallen flat on our faces ourselves we know much better how to help someone else up. Until then we just laugh uncomfortably, not knowing really what else to do.
What I don't miss about school is how out of place I felt. I don't miss the in-between stages, not nearly an adult, yet far from being a kid. I don't miss wondering if I was going to grow up to be a person I liked. By the way, I did- grow up to be a person I like this is. I'm proud of who I am today.